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Former Indian restaurant to be sold at auction weeks after closure

PUBLISHED: 10:56 19 May 2019 | UPDATED: 15:01 19 May 2019

Masala Cottage at Brundall closed after a re-possession notice has been put on it.  Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Masala Cottage at Brundall closed after a re-possession notice has been put on it. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Archant

A former Indian restaurant in Brundall is being sold at auction just weeks after it closed.

Building owner Richard Hughes. Photo: Matthew UsherBuilding owner Richard Hughes. Photo: Matthew Usher

The owners of the Masala Cottage were served with a repossession notice last month ordering them to clear the premises within 14 days.

The building's landlord, Richard Hughes, said he was forced to take action due to issues with rent and insurance payments.

He has now decided to sell the property at auction with a guide price of between £225,000 to £275,000.

Mr Hughes, who is also the chef director of the Assembly House in Norwich, said: "We decided to let the property out and it was a bit of a disastrous experience for us.

Masala Cottage at Brundall closed after a re-possession notice has been put on it.  Picture: DENISE BRADLEYMasala Cottage at Brundall closed after a re-possession notice has been put on it. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

"We lost about £8,500 over the course of it."

The building, located on The Street, was leased to the restaurant owners in June 2017.

A repossession notice was then served against them on April 12 this year on behalf of Mr Hughes.

A message on the restaurant's Facebook page said on the same day: "Due to unforeseen circumstances we are not open tonight. We will keep you updated about this weekend, sorry for the inconvenience!"

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Mr Hughes, who previously ran a successful restaurant from the property before it became an Indian, said he had the chance to open it as a business again.

He added: "I've had about two dozen calls asking to reopen, but I don't have the appetite for it.

"We've instead decided to put it on the market.

"I'd love to see it as a restaurant again because we had a really successful business there."

According the Brundall Local History Group, the Grade II listed property was known as the Old Beams before it became the Lavender House under Mr Hughes.

Built in the 17th century, it was originally the White Horse pub and later became a tea room.

In December last year, three people were taken to the Norfolk and Norwich University after suffering symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning at the restaurant.

It later emerged that two of the men who were hospitalised had been detained by Home Office Immigration Enforcement, which was carrying out an investigation.

The thatched property's online listing states the Indian restaurant was charged an annual rent of £27,500.

- Has a restaurant near you suddenly closed? Email luke.powell@archant.co.uk

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